The City of Scottsdale plans to continue referring legal cases for its veterans to the East Valley Regional Veterans Treatment Court in Tempe, as the City Council approved the renewal of an intergovernmental agreement that began about four years ago.
During a June meeting, Scottsdale City Council consented to authorize renewing the IGA from Sept. 8, 2020 to Sept. 7, 2022, with up to three successive one-year renewals, as agreed upon by the presiding judges of Scottsdale and Tempe; plus payment to use City of Tempe judicial officers, according to a city staff report that detailed the contract between the two municipalities.
Likewise, City of Scottsdale will use City of Tempe judicial officers with the East Valley Regional Veterans Treatment Court, which is held at Tempe Municipal Court, to adjudicate local veterans’ cases since it has handled veteran cases throughout the region since April 15, 2016.
At that time an order was enacted to establish the EVRVC --- Regional Veterans Court --- for the municipal courts in the East Valley including Tempe, Chandler, Gilbert, Scottsdale City Court, and other municipal courts.
City Council, which previously approved Scottsdale to enter an IGA with Tempe for the Regional Veterans Court on Sept. 8, 2016, wants Scottsdale to continue participating in and working with Tempe on the Regional Veterans Court to expedite cases involving veterans, regionalizing resources for veterans, and “improving the administration of justice,” the city staff report stated.
Also, the report outlined the use and pay for Tempe judicial officers adjudicating Scottsdale City Court cases, a couple times a week or month, depending on case load referrals when the Scottsdale cases are heard. Tempe has allotted approximately two days designated for City of Scottsdale cases from 1 to 5 p.m.
The Scottsdale City Court anticipates using eight judicial pro tem hours per month for a budget of $6,800 for the fiscal year; send one clerical staff, with equipment, to Tempe Municipal Court exclusively to process City of Scottsdale cases, so additional staffing costs is not required as the designated clerical staff already functions as City Court employee.
While Scottsdale City Court anticipates using Tempe pro tem judges, who are essentially part-time judges working under the jurisdiction and control of Tempe to hear Scottsdale’s Regional Veterans Court cases, Scottsdale pro tem judges may be sent to Tempe Municipal Court to occasionally hear cases, according to the report.
The Tempe pro tem judges are paid $60 an hour plus employee-related expenses totaling $70.21 per hour, so Scottsdale City Court will reimburse Tempe for the hours that the particular judge hears and adjudicates for Scottsdale City Court cases referred to the Regional Veterans Court.
Previously, the City of Tempe operated its own veterans court, the report said, detailing how the presiding judges of the participating municipal courts of the Regional Veterans Court had agreed to hold dockets at the Tempe Municipal Court, 140 E. Fifth Street.